Going Cashless? No problem!

Stephanie Hutchings
22-May-2019 09:02:00

Forget millennials - who may not be able to buy a house, but between Instagram and avocado toast brunches, they’ve been keeping marketeers and consumer psychologists very busy. It’s Generation Z that are radically changing the way that consumers interact with brands and businesses.

Multi-generation family sitting on sofa and using laptop, mobile phone and digital tablet

Gen Z is the newest generation to be named and were born between 1995 and 2015.
They are currently between 4-24 years old.

They’re the first generation to be fully digital natives: they’ve grown up with Snapchat, iPhones, Netflix and Deliveroo. They expect a friction-free, tailored experience that brands need to take note of; it’s not just leisure who needs to learn from Amazon’s 1-click buying, with everything from addresses to credit cards saved automatically to minimise potential pain points and maximise revenue. Money, too, is going digital.

Cashless solutions

The use of cash as a payment mechanism in society is at record lows. In Sweden, for example, cash accounted for just 2% of all payments in 2017, and this is predicted to fall to just half a percent by 2020. Norway’s largest bank has refused to accept cash for the last four years.

In another example, Tottenham Hotspur’s newly-unveiled stadium no longer accepts cash. Instead, they are asking fans in their 62,000-capacity venue to pay by card, contactless mobile phones or prepaid cards. Its season ticket holders are also able to load money onto their stadium access cards ahead of games. They claim it will speed up transactions, improve efficiency and pose fewer risks both in terms of hygiene and physical safety whilst handling large sums of cash.

Son standing as goal keeper with dad in the park

Cash also offers anonymity, which in the digital age means no valuable customer data. Pushing for a fully-cashless facility means that staff are freed from the burden of chasing bad debts and revenue is available upfront to operators, whilst customers draw it down as required.

Gladstone’s cashless solutions allow for a single point of integration across all Gladstone modules to manage, track, monitor and report on all payments, whether they be at the point of joining or making individual bookings, or by location, whether that be online, via a mobile app or on-site at self-service kiosks.

Reward programmes

Viral hit games, Pokemon Go! and Zombies, Run!, where you scour the landscape for Pokemon characters and try to outrun a horde of zombies chasing you respectively, demonstrate the incredible staying power of gamification in healthcare.

The Driving the Future of Payments report estimates that in 2017, consumers received more than $15bn in rewards, loyalty points and incentives designed to maximise spending and retention. Consumers are conditioned to expect rewards for their loyalty to a brand, and it is no different in leisure.

Loyalty Program card with colorful background with defocused lights-1

Turning gym visits into loyalty points, which accrue for badges to display on social media, or are redeemable for classes/credit in cafés and restaurants/and so on, is the next frontier that Gladstone are working on in conjunction with several of our key customers, trialling functionality, different designs and reward schemes. Keep an eye on the Gladstone Community forums for up-to-the minute developments.


The latest Gladstone release, Threadneedle, sees Cashless and loyalty features extended to Join and Book Online, Gladstone 360, MobilePro and the suite of APIs, which means that for the first time our customers have in-house solutions for fully-cashless operation and reward programmes.

You might enjoy the article "Growing pains of a cashless society" from Kieron Butcher, CTO Fusion.

We’re also really excited to announce the development of our own payment gateway with expert partners Cardstream, who’ve been leading the industry in secure online payment processing for several years. Read more about GladstonePay or request a call back to discuss GladstonePay.

Whether you love cash or loathe it, the way we spend money is changing radically. The potential exists for operators to make major gains in customer retention rates by deploying smart solutions to take advantage of this shift in consumer habits.

Learn more about Cashless.

Get in touch with our customer team to find out more.

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